Opening statement is one of only three times where you can speak directly to the jury, the other two being jury selection and closing argument. Each of the three has its specific function and your preparation and strategy for each will differ accordingly, but there is no question that many cases are won or lost during opening statement. Some cite statistics that 80 percent of all jurors make up their minds during opening statement. It is not debatable that initial impressions made during opening statements, favorable or otherwise, often will form the basis of the ultimate jury verdict.
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